Hunters, trappers and wildlife watchers in a six-county area that stretches from Hutchinson south to the Iowa border benefit from the management, habitat and oversight work of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' Nicollet area wildlife staff.
Area Wildlife Supervisor Joe Stangel, three full-time and one part-time staff oversee a work area totaling 2.3 million acres of public and private land within McLeod, Sibley, Nicollet, LeSueur, Blue Earth and Fairbault counties. The area includes 93 state Wildlife Management Areas totaling more than 19,588 acres; 10 designated wildlife lakes totaling 15,400 acres; and seven wildlife refuges totaling 19,470 acres.
- What we do
At work for you
Nicollet area wildlife staff conduct a prescribed burn.
- Completing 25 prescribed burns on 418 acres of grassland and prairie habitat on area WMAs.
- Restoring, enhancing and managing an additional 1,407 acres of grassland and prairie habitat at 47 sites on area WMAs.
- Controlling noxious weeds on 2,404 acres spread across 57 sites.
- Collaborating with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and other partners to restore 45 acres of wetland habitat on WMAs and managing water levels in four shallow lakes totaling 10,690 acres.
- Managed 15 stations during the 2017 deer season as part of the central zone chronic wasting disease (CWD) surveillance area.
- Developing, maintaining or improving 50 user facilities (parking lots, gates, trails, etc.); maintaining nearly 5 miles of access road; and posting and maintaining 22 miles of boundaries on 19 WMAs.
- Through collaboration with conservation partners over the past six years, 32 tracts totaling 2,307 acres have been acquired through Outdoor Heritage Fund habitat funding and have become WMAs in the six-county area managed by the Nicollet area wildlife office.